Seven days without sugar

The following lightly edited article was originally published by the author on, June 8, 2016
Quitting smoking is a terribly difficult challenge. This writer tried in the eighties, only to resume the nasty habit in the mid-nineties. But eventually, it was mind over matter, and I quit in three days (smoking fewer and fewer cigs each day) in 2008.
If only giving up sugar were that easy! Here in the US, refined sugar is in everything from spaghetti sauce to "healthy" breakfast cereals and bars. Fruit juice is one of the biggest culprits, with more per average serving than in many candy bars. The only way to really avoid juice sugar is to juice the fruit (or vegetables) yourself.
Nevertheless, I'm taking on what I've coined the "No Sugar for Seven Days Challenge" and implore my readers to follow suit. Whether our motivation is losing weight, setting a good example for our kids or, in my case, stopping constant cavities and other dental woes, sugar mustn't own us. If all this isn't enough motivation, consider that last year sugar was linked to over 420 million existing diabetes cases worldwide, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).
I reckon I've spent several thousand dollars on my dental health since my 30s, losing more teeth than I care to admit. As I write I'm battling nightly pain following oral surgery, a natural byproduct of bone adjustment, I'm told. None of this would have happened if as a kid I'd listened to my mom, who always wanted to hide the cookie jar.
Starting today, no more refined sugar - cake, cookies, fruit rollups, or even sugar in coffee. Yes, I love you, pralines and beignets! It's not personal!
Cantaloupe, bananas, oranges, strawberries, cherries - all perfectly fine. Natural sugar is the direction I'm going in. I will report every 24 hours on how I am feeling: will it be the emotions of the Seven Dwarfs, starting with Grumpy?
Please comment below or write to me at if you join this mission!
Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons images, by jeffreyw - Flickr: Mmm... apple raisin hazelnut crisp,
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